While I was drawing this house a young guy with no shirt but a lot of tattoos, walkled by with his dog. ‘Is that a Border Collie?’ I said. ‘Yeh.’ he said. ‘I love Border Collies.’ I said. ‘Yeh.’ he said.
While I was drawing this the garbage truck came screaming along the road. It was early in the morning, about 7.30am. I could hear people laughing in the house behind me. It’s easy to be happy that early in the morning, when the sun is already up and strong.
While I was drawing this a group of people made up of 2 elderly men, an elderly woman and a young teenage girl went past.
It was only 9am but they were already wearing beach clothing; water shoes, bathing suits, hats, sunglasses.
‘Ya mind if I take a look at what you’re drawing there?’ said one of the elderly men crossing the street toward me.
‘Of course not.’ I said.
‘Well, my, look at that,’ he said, standing behind me and looking down at my picture,’ that’s really coming along,’
Then the other man came over and looked at my drawing.
And then the girl came over.
Ant then the woman came over and they were all standing behind me saying things like ‘ooh, ahh, woah’.
Then the elderly man who’d crossed the street first said-‘What inspires you to draw a place like that?’
‘Well, the light has to be right and the house has to be a pretty colour,’ I told him, ‘and that’s about it.’
‘Well, it’s beautiful.’ he said and the others said some similar things.
Then, because the sun was out, and because the light was right, and because I was sitting in a street in Florida drawing a picture of a house, as the 2 elderly men and the woman and the girl all turned to walk away I called out, ‘You all have a nice day now’.
And I really meant it.
While I was drawing this 2 middle aged women with dark orange tans came up the street on bicycles, pulled up on either side of me, looked down and started talking at me.
‘Well hey there,’ said the woman to my right, ‘I see you’re doing some painting!’
‘Actually,’ I said, putting a pastel back in its box and looking up at her, ‘I’m drawing.’
‘Oh, how neat!’ she shouted out.
Then the other woman started talking.
‘On Oprah yesterday there was an artist who did this like massive portrait,’ she said, letting go of her handlebars and drawing a big air square with her hands, ‘and he’s like the fastest portraitist in the world. And he was like doing this portrait in 2 minutes only using his hands, no brushes, and right alongside of him they had the fastest violinist in the world and he was playing Vivaldi, one of the seasons, I don’t know which season, but it was, really, really fast.’
Then the other woman shouted out ‘how neat!’ again and then without even waiting for my response to the Oprah portrait story, they both told to me to be sure to have a great day and rode off.
While I was drawing this, a blond woman with a whippet crossed the square in my direction.
As she passed behind me I could tell that her and the dog had stopped and they were looking down at my picture.
I took my headphones off and turned and looked up at her.
‘Hello.’ I said.
‘Wow wee,’ she said looking from the drawing to the house and back, ‘you got that light there just right.’
‘Thank you.’ I said.
‘Are you selling them?’ she said.
‘Are you buying?’ I said back.
While I was drawing this a man with a man came up to me and said in a German accent- ‘Is this the square where they made the movie?’
‘I don’t know.’ I said, ‘Which movie are you talking about?’
‘Forest Gump,’ he said.
And then, maybe out of embarrassment, he started laughing.
And then, because he was laughing, I started laughing too.